08 March 2014 16:21

Cyprus on Saturday marks the annual celebration of Women's Day with events around the island.
The UNDP-PFF and Goethe-Institut Cyprus are co-organising the first International Women Film Week at 6pm on Saturday in the Goethe-Institut hall next to Ledra Palace Hotel in the Nicosia bufferzone.
Films from different European and other countries will be presented dealing with topics related to women's affairs.
Also on Saturday  at 9.30am, the Cyprus Labour Federation (PEO) is launching a Pancyprian awareness campaign for workers in retail regarding new business hours which mostly affect women.
The Cyprus Community Media Centre yesterday launched a photo competition which is part of the project "Where are the Women? Capturing the Gender Dividend in Cyprus for Peace and Beyond".
The photo challenge calls all photographers, professional and amateur, to submit a photograph that includes a written message addressing one or two very important issues including the lack of gender equality in peace building efforts and the need for a solution that embraces and safeguards gender equality.
The best 10 submissions will be selected by a committee of professionals and exhibited around the island.
Submissions can be made by tweeting the photo tagging @WhereRWomenCY or posting it on the facebook page timeline also tagging the "@where are the women" page. The deadline is Saturday.
To mark the day, Interior Minister Socrates Hasikos said that March 8 is celebrated around the world to commemorate the struggle of women against gender discrimination and to promote the principle of equal treatment between men and women in professional and family life.
He pointed out however that, in Cyprus, women are under-represented in decision-making positions in the workplace, politics and financial policy and despite legislation to secure equal pay the income gap between the two genders continues to exist and is fuelled by the discrimination and stereotypes in the professional separation in the job market.
At the same time, the minister noted that in the aftermath of the financial crisis, women have been affected the most.
 "Today, the financial crisis has made the position of working women even more difficult. The continuous shrinking of the social state has shifted the burden of the household, caring for the elderly and the children to women, worsening at the same time their financial and employment situation," Hasikos said.
 "The Gender Equality Committee will continue its work for information and counselling support of employees and employers until equality between men and women in the workplace is achieved," he added.
Labour Minister Zeta Emilianidou said that the duty of the ministry is the implementation of measures and targets to support and reinforce women's positions.
"Gender equality is a fundamental policy of the EU and a target of the Cypriot state as an inextricable part of our modern civilisation. Equal treatment of women for equal value employment, equal opportunities and potential are an essential factor for financial development and social cohesion," Emilianidou said.


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